Nassau tests, sprays mosquitoes after West Nile death
? After confirming the first West Nile virus death of the season, Nassau County health officials say they are trapping mosquitoes throughout the county to test them for the disease.
The Nassau County Health Department and Department of Public Works are also spraying larvicide to kill mosquitoes before they hatch.
?West Nile virus is a concern,? Bryan Matthews, the West Nile virus expert at the Health Department, says. ?It's a public health concern.?
George Cody, 75, of Carle Place, died Tuesday after two weeks of treatment at Winthrop University Hospital. Doctors initially thought he was suffering from an ear infection, but tests have since confirmed he had West Nile.
Health officials are now awaiting confirmation that the virus also killed an 80-year-old New Hyde Park woman.
The Health Department says the virus may have surfaced in six Nassau County communities including Bethpage, Carle Place, Massapequa, New Hyde Park, Uniondale and West Hempstead. Only two cases were seen in the county in all of 2007.
Suffolk County has also reported two cases of West Nile virus this year. A 61-year-old Central Islip woman displayed symptoms on Aug. 13, and a 71-year-old woman felt oncoming symptoms on Aug. 12. Both women tested positive for West Nile virus, but were never hospitalized.
The women will undergo a second round of testing according to protocols. Until the second tests are completed, health officials are calling the sicknesses ?suspect? West Nile cases.